When Jordan Burnand stands on the tee nothing fazes him. He’s in his happy place, whether he’s got a driver in his hand, looking to launch the ball 300m down the middle of the fairway, or holding an iron on a par three, aiming to attack the hole.

He has a proven track record with both. The Srixon-sponsored 23-year-old has made three holes-in-one, the first at the age of six at Bushman Sands, another at Ebotse when he was 10, and at Fancourt’s Outeniqua 12th hole in his last year as a teenager.

However, it’s when he picks up his driver, which is a Callaway Paradym, that he feels he can conquer the world. “I live on the Highveld and attend the Grant Veenstra Golf Academy at Ebotse Links, so I like playing up here. I carry the ball around 300 metres off the tee at altitude and about 275m at the coast. But I tend to hit the ball high with spin, which is not ideal when the wind is pumping in coastal conditions.”

Burnand is being too modest. On a challenging layout in difficult conditions at The Woods at Mt Edgecombe in February he won the SA Amateur Stroke Play Championship, rebounding from a second-round 76 to close with a 69 and 67, finishing on two-under-par 278. Only four of the 69 qualifiers finished in the red that week.


Burnand’s top five.

Once everyone is similar, it’s course management and temperament that make such a big difference

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Much was made of the fact his course management shone through like a lighthouse beacon in the fog. And it’s something Burnand touched on. “All the elite amateurs have similar games. We can all hit the ball far. We can all hit the ball with spin. If you close your eyes you will hear the sound of the ball coming off the clubface. It sounds different, as it does with the pros. So, once everyone is similar, it’s course management and temperament that make such a big difference.

“You have to plot and manage your way around a course. You’re not always going to hit a perfect shot or have a perfect hole, or round. You have to have the knowledge and understanding that things can go wrong and you must adapt to the course and the situation.”

He also credits the set-up at Ebotse and the GVGA. “I’ve been working hard with Grant’s right-hand man Keagan Beyer for the past three years. Grant is overseas quite a bit, working with clients on the DP World Tour and LIV Golf circuit, and the feedback he sends about the pros is invaluable. The info really helps us understand what the pros are all about.”

Burnand has had a dream 2023 and started 2024 where he left off. “I’ve had an incredible time, thanks to GolfRSA. At the end of last April I was inducted into the National Squad. It’s been a privilege to be involved. In May last year I went with the squad to Malawi and after that enjoyed a full five-week tour of the UK. We also went to Argentina for two weeks and Altin [van der Merwe] and I went off to India. It was all such an inspiring learning curve.”

Despite taking a few weeks off in December, there was no sign of rust as he started 2024 by going down in a playoff with Oliver Goldhill at the Ekurhuleni Open after both had signed off on 14-under 274.

GolfRSA has been extremely supportive of me and it’s been a life-changing experience being part of the National Squad

Burnand’s win at the SA Amateur Stroke Play was followed four days later by a 4&2 defeat to Gregor Graham in the final of the SA Amateur Match Play at Royal Johannesburg's East Course. And just for good measure he improved every round in finishing tie-4th at the GolfRSA International Amateur (previously African Amateur) at Houghton in February.

Burnand has been part of the amateur circuit for “seven or eight years” and while he’s only 23 he feels it’s the right time to take the next step.

“GolfRSA has been extremely supportive of me and it’s been a life-changing experience being part of the National Squad. I’ve told them I will be going to the Sunshine Tour’s Qualifying School at Heron Banks from 23-26 April.

“I feel like I’ve ticked all the boxes I set out to do as an amateur. I earned my national colours, I reached top three in the rankings, I won the SA Amateur Stroke Play and I’ve represented my country on the international stage. It just feels like I’ve done enough and I'm ready for the next challenge. It’s time.”

Indeed it is. And the man who would have continued his studying as a financial student and become an accountant has a head for numbers. For the immediate future the numbers that count will be those he writes down on his scorecard.


Celebrating with the victorious Team South Africa, captained by Burnand, at the 2024 GolfRSA International Amateur.

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